Monthly Archives:: July 2012

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Review: Auracle by Gina Rosati

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Gina Rosati
Release date: August 7th 2012
by Roaring Brook Press


16 year old Anna Rogan has a secret she’s only shared with her best friend, Rei; she can astrally project out of her body, allowing her spirit to explore the world and the far reaches of the universe.

When there’s a fatal accident and her classmate Taylor takes over Anna’s body, what was an exhilarating distraction from her repressive home life threatens to become a permanent state. Faced with a future trapped in another dimension, Anna turns to Rei for help. Now the two of them must find a way to get Anna back into her body and stop Taylor from accusing an innocent friend of murder. Together Anna and Rei form a plan but it doesn’t take into account the deeper feelings that are beginning to grow between them.

*A copy was provided by Macmillan for review purposes*

Utterly original and refreshing, Auracle is a breath of fresh air with its addicting premise full of riveting turns. This was even more so in my case where I hadn’t read the synopsis in ages and, therefore, had no idea what I was getting into, causing me to be shocked by the actual premise itself. It absolutely thrilled me.

Since I’m hoping you all get the same exciting experience of going in blind I won’t bring up the primary plot line, but work my way around it. What I can safely tell you, is it involves astral projection – which is fascinating in of itself. I was highly satisfied by the way the world building was brought up in this novel. We not only get great detail in how Anna goes about projecting and leaving her body, but the space – or dimension – she roams when she’s ethereal is solidly created with the inclusion of thought-provoking theoretical physics as part of the explanations. As a very skeptical and science minded person, I appreciate that Rosati didn’t leave it exclusively magical. As the plot progresses, we get even deeper into the stretches of Anna’s abilities, leaving me completely immersed in this story.

Anna’s witty and sharp narration is undemanding and strikingly easy to enjoy. The addition of a strong dysfunctional family dynamic is great for character building and to give an extra layer of depth to the story. With an alcoholic father, Anna is walking on eggshells in her home – using her astral projection as a way of escape. The side characters have a lot to offer to the story as well, with maybe the exception of Seth which, for having such a substantial part, is scarcely developed. The villain – Taylor – regardless of falling victim to the short skirts and rich attitude mean girl stereotype, plays her part particularly well in this story, especially towards the ending where she gets veritably crafty. Then there is Rei…

Surrounding a unique, fast-paced, page turning plot is a largely romantic substory. Rei is your very sweet, – albeit very perfect – love interest that didn’t quite make my heart flutter, but he enchanted me with his charisma and sincere nature. We get a budding romance that is both meaningful and sweet. Those who get enamoured by “boy next door” love stories will adore it!

Auracle brings something new and exciting to the overly crowded YA paranormal genre. Its suspense, humor, and dramatics dispenses an irresistible entertainment value that will undoubtedly keep you up until the early hours!

4 Hot Espressos

Circle of Silence Tour Stop

Posted by on 07/30/2012 • 63 Comments

Today I have the fabulous Carol Tanzman over the blog for Circle of Seilence’s Blog Tour. I previously enjoyed her other novel, dancergirl – find my review here – and stay tuned for my review of Circle of Silence later this week! For today’s post, I have an interview with Carol, along with a pretty awesome giveaway ūüėČ

Circle of Silence Carol M. TanzmanPublication date: July 24th 2012by Harlequin Teen


THE BIGGEST STORY OF MY LIFE COULD BE HOW IT ENDS It’s my turn to run a “Campus News” crew, and I’ve put together a team that can break stories wide open. And Washington Irving High has a truly great one to cover, if only we can find a lead.

A secret society has formed in our school….

Xpresso Weekly: Stacking the Shelves (14)

Posted by on 07/29/2012 • 71 Comments

Xpresso Weekly is my edition of Stacking the Shelves hosted by Tynga’s Reviews featuring the books I got this week, and I also mention blog news/happenings of the past week.

This week at Xpresso Reads

Hi fellow book lovers! We’re almost in August can you believe!? Eek! And you know what we celebrated on the blog this week? Jenny Pox turned 2 and you can win the first three books in the series – signed! Today (Sunday) is the last day to enter so don’t forget before you head off! Find the post here! I also had the Frost Blog Tour come by for my review and you have a bunch of chances to win both ecopies and paperbacks! Don’t forget to check out my Facebook page for the…

Fresh Batch (July 29th – August 4th)

Posted by on 07/28/2012 • 23 Comments

Exclusively titled for Xpresso Reads, Fresh Batch features the hottest releases of this upcoming week.

Flavor of the week:

Pushing the LimitsKatie McGarryRelease date: July 31st, 2012by Harlequin Teen


So wrong for each other…and yet so right. No one knows what happened the night Echo Emerson went from popular girl with jock boyfriend to gossiped-about outsider with “freaky” scars on her arms. Even Echo can’t remember the whole truth of that horrible night. All she knows is that she wants everything to go back to normal.¬†But when Noah Hutchins, the smoking-hot, girl-using loner in the black leather jacket, explodes into her life with his tough attitude and surprising understanding, Echo’s world shifts in ways she could never have imagined. They should have nothing in common. And with the…

Review: The Waiting Sky by Lara Zielin

Posted by on 07/27/2012 • 37 Comments

The Waiting SkyLara ZielinRelease date: August 2nd 2012by Putnam Juvenile


One summer chasing tornadoes could finally change Jane’s life for the better

Seventeen-year-old Jane McAllister can’t quite admit her mother’s alcoholism is spiraling dangerously out of control until she drives drunk, nearly killing them and Jane’s best friend.

Jane has only one place to turn: her older brother Ethan, who left the problems at home years ago for college. A summer with him and his tornado-chasing buddies may just provide the time and space Jane needs to figure out her life and whether it still includes her mother. But she struggles with her anger at Ethan for leaving home and feels guilty–is she also abandoning her mom just when she needs Jane most? The carefree trip turned journey…

Review: The Obsidian Blade by Pete Hautman

Posted by on 07/26/2012 • 0 Comments

The Obsidian BladePete Hautman Series: The Klaatu Diskos, #1Release date: April 10th 2012by Candlewick Press


The first time his father disappeared, Tucker Feye had just turned thirteen. The Reverend Feye simply climbed on the roof to fix a shingle, let out a scream, and vanished – only to walk up the driveway an hour later, looking older and worn, with a strange girl named Lahlia in tow. In the months that followed, Tucker watched his father grow distant and his once loving mother slide into madness. But then both of his parents disappear. Now in the care of his wild Uncle Kosh, Tucker begins to suspect that the disks of shimmering air he keeps seeing – one right on top of the roof – hold the answer to restoring…

Review: One Good Hustle by Billie Livingston

Posted by on 07/26/2012 • 29 Comments

One Good HustleBillie LivingstonRelease date: July 24th 2012by Random House of Canada


The child of 2 con artists, 16-year-old Sammie Bell always prided herself on knowing the score. But now she finds herself backed into a corner. After a hustle gone dangerously wrong, her mother, Marlene, is sliding into an abyss of alcoholic depression, spending her days fantasizing aloud about death–a goal Sammie is tempted to help her accomplish. Horrified by the appeal of this, Sammie packs a bag and leaves her mother to her own devices.

With her father missing in action, she has nowhere else to go but the home of a friend with 2 parents who seem to actually love their daughter and each other–and who awkwardly try to extend some semblance of family…

Review: Red Heart Tattoo

Posted by on 07/25/2012 • 29 Comments

Red Heart TattooLurlene McDanielSeries: Standalone Publication date: July 24th 2012by Random House Children’s Books


At 7:45 a.m. on the day before Thanksgiving break, a bomb goes off at Edison High. Nine people die instantly. Fifteen are critically injured. Twenty-two suffer less severe injuries. And one is blinded. Those who survive, struggle to cope with the loss and destruction. All must find new meaning for their lives as a result of something they may never understand.

*A copy was provided by Random House Children’s Books for review purposes* With an eye widening prologue that winds up your emotions, Red Heart Tattoo’s powerful beginning sets the ideal mood for the whole book. Told in five perspectives, we experience the before and after of a school bombing that leaves grief…